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Heatley, Emery spark Senators in romp over Panthers

Dec 1, 2006 - 3:31 AM
OTTAWA (Ticker) -- It took a while, but Dany Heatley, Ray Emery and the Ottawa Senators are back in form.

Heatley scored two goals and added an assist and Emery made 31 saves to lead the Senators to their sixth win in seven games, a 6-0 triumph over the Florida Panthers.

The top club in the Eastern Conference last season, Ottawa also continued its mastery of Florida, improving to to 7-1-1 in the last nine meetings between the teams.

"We came out really strong and continued it throughout the game," said Emery, who has allowed only seven goals during his current five-game home unbeaten streak. "I felt really good in there. Sometimes I have noticed I'm not 100 percent, but I feel good enough to play.

"It was a good game and we're glad to keep things rolling. We dominated, but we know Florida can play pretty tough, so we had to come out hard in the first 10 minutes."

Coming off a 3-1-0 road trip, the Senators wanted to get off to a fast start against the Panthers.

"The first game back after a long road trip, (coach Bryan Murray) talked to us," Heatley said. "He just wanted us to be ready, and we were. We got on the puck right away, played pretty good and we were on our game. ... We want to get on a run. We're playing some good hockey, and we want to keep that run going."

In being shut out for the third straight time, the Panthers fell to 0-4-1 in their last five games. Florida has not scored a goal in 201 minutes, 31 seconds, last tallying when Gary Roberts beat Emery at 3:29 of the third period in a 6-4 loss to Ottawa on Friday.

"An embarrassment," Florida center Chris Gratton said. "Frustration, that pretty much sums it up. The guys just aren't scoring goals, and tonight Ottawa picked up three early and the lights were out. It's almost impossible to come back from 3-0 in another team's building."

"You don't go very often three games without a goal, especially with some of the guys we have," Roberts added. "It just goes to show you we've got some work to do."

Ottawa wasted little time taking control as Heatley scored just 2:37 into the contest. During a power play, he backhanded a rebound past goaltender Alex Auld for his 15th goal of the season.

Just over six minutes later, Heatley doubled the lead with a slap shot from the top of the left faceoff circle.

Chris Kelly and defenseman Andrej Meszaros each had a goal and an assist, while Mike Fisher and Antoine Vermette also scored for the Senators.

Auld, who posted his first shutout of the season in a shootout loss to Montreal on Tuesday, was pulled early in the second period after surrendering five goals on just 17 shots.

"We didn't play like a team," Florida captain Olli Jokinen said. "We were lucky it was only 6-0. Only two guys showed up and played hard. Those two were our goalies. It was the worst game in the six years I've been here."

Roberts echoed Jokinen's sentiments regarding the Panthers' netminders.

"The power play wasn't very good, 5-on-5 wasn't very good and we didn't give much help to our goalies," he said. "They're the guys who should be most frustrated because we didn't do a very good job for them tonight."

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